Cleveland, Tennessee, man indicted on six more charges for actions during Capitol riot

Joseph Padilla
Joseph Padilla
photo Joseph Padilla

A federal grand jury indicted a Cleveland, Tennessee, man charged with participating in the Capitol riot on Jan. 6 in Washington, D.C., on 12 charges, according to federal court documents filed last week.

Joseph Lino "Jose" Padilla, 40, originally faced six charges upon his arrest involving assaulting a police officer and throwing a flagpole during the riot.

Padilla, who was honorably discharged from the Tennessee National Guard in 2012, was arrested by the Bradley County Sheriff's Office on Feb. 23 after people who recognized him tipped off the FBI.

His new charges include:

- Assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers.

- Civil disorder (three counts).

- Assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon (two counts).

- Obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding and abetting.

- Entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon.

- Disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon.

- Engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon.

- Disorderly conduct in the Capitol grounds or buildings.

- Act of physical violence in the Capitol grounds or buildings.

According to the FBI's charging documents, prosecutors note that Padilla is seen on a Metropolitan Police Department officer's body camera wearing a scuba mask over his eyes and pushing a police barricade line while shouting, "Push! Push! F -- push!"

Shortly thereafter, another video - posted by an obscure social media entity that has since been banned from YouTube for violating its community guidelines - shows Padilla and other rioters using a large, metal sign "as a battering ram against the MPD officers attempting to hold the line."

Later that day, a video posted to Instagram by photographer "jrobertson" showed Padilla standing just to the side of the stairs leading up to the archway of the Capitol's lower west terrace doors when he threw a flagpole - javelin style - at police as other rioters continued attacking the officers. The flagpole landed just in front of the police line.

Since his arrest, prosecutors have argued Padilla should not be granted pre-trial release because he "poses a clear danger to our republic." They point to his actions - documented in videos - and his own social media statements made on Jan. 6 and the days that followed to support their argument.

"By word and deed, Padilla has supported the violent overthrow of the United States government," Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacob Strain wrote, "and his recounting of the events on Jan. 6 represent his continued violent attitude and lack of remorse."

"Such conduct threatens the republic itself," Strain added. "Indeed, few offenses are more threatening to our way of life."

The motion now sits before Senior U.S. District Judge John D. Bates. A decision has not yet been made.

Federal authorities have arrested more than 315 people from 40 states and the District of Columbia in connection with the attack on the Capitol, during which supporters of former President Donald Trump attempted to block Congress from certifying his re-election loss.

At least eight Tennesseans have been arrested for their participation in the riot, according to a U.S. Department of Justice database.

Contact Rosana Hughes at 423-757-6327, or follow her on Twitter @HughesRosana.

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